MBALE —Over the years, I have learnt something common between disease outbreaks and financial crises that have hit Uganda in recent years.
According to information from the World Health Organisation and the Centre for Diseases Control, Uganda experienced numerous Ebola outbreaks in the years 2000, 2014, 2017, and 2018 extending into 2019.
The disease is classified as Viral Hemorrhagic Fever and is spread by physical contact with body fluids of an infected person, animal, bird, insect, and or objects that have been contaminated by the fluid.
The virus’ natural reservoir is suspected to be a species of fruit bat, which does not itself fall ill but can pass the disease on to primates, including humans, insects, animals, and birds. Humans become exposed to the virus if they kill or butcher infected bats for food or eat fruits whose parts have been eaten by the fruit bat.
Other theories have pointed to the diseases having originated from monkeys, a delicacy for many in the jungles of Congo. I personally think the disease is manufactured by white capitalists who create a problem so that they are paid to create a solution.
Following an incubation period of between 2 and 21 days, Ebola develops into a high body temperature, fatigue, chest pain, diarrhea, vomiting, unexplained bleeding, yellowing of the eyes, headaches, sore throat, dizziness as well as intense muscle and joint pain.
In terms of treatment, health experts have recommended two life-saving medicines, Inmazeb and Ebanga, which were experimented with during the first stages of Ebola outbreaks.
Just this week, the ministry of health announced the outbreak of Ebola in the country and within five days 11 people have been reported dead and others bedridden.
This announcement comes four years after the country overcame a previous outbreak that claimed several lives. As usual, the Ministry of Health has announced several measures to contain the disease including but not limited to hygiene. Soon, the most affected districts may be quarantined to contain the disease, a fear that has been water down by the Commissioner for Public Health Emergencies.
Ebola is regarded as a highly contagious and deadly disease that can spread within a short period of time. Now that the world is just recovering from the deadly coronavirus, donors will do whatever it takes to contain the problem before it spreads to become a pandemic.
Toda, I was reading an article written by one of the haters of Uganda’s health care system.
He blasted Uganda for relaxing whenever a disease outbreak is overcome. To the writer, it was only realistic that Uganda owing to its close proximity to Congo ought to have come up with a standby vaccine to deal with a future Ebola threat.
We are being blamed for doing nothing about the eminent Ebola threat yet Uganda’s first encounter with disease dates back to over ten years ago. Now we are being blamed for a last minute alarm in order to extort money from the western world. Many of our haters think we are using Ebola as a blackmail tool to induce donations. The writer goes on to predict that by the end of September, many countries will be sending health warnings to their citizens living and working in Uganda to avoid public places.
Another counter write up on the same Ebola outbreak in Uganda seems to suggest that the western world is conniving with health experts in Uganda to declare an Ebola outbreak in order to slap a travel ban or Uganda in an effort to increase our financial burden.
The financial burden will then be used to force Uganda to enter into more borrowing agreements that will see the mortgaging of the country to the western world which is envious of our Chinese Partnerships.
My readers need to be reminded that the 2022 Ebola outbreak in Mubende is the fifth in a period of 12year and comes after the World Health Organisation announced an outbreak of the disease in areas of North Kivu in Congo which neighbors Uganda. Whether the announcement is part of their long-term plan to exploit Uganda is a topic for another day.
There is also a likelihood that Ebola was introduced in this part of Congo in order to enable easy spread into Uganda. Mr Emmanuel Ainebyoona, the spokesperson of the Ministry confirmed that all the new cases and deaths happened in Mubende which is far off from the border of Congo
There is now a fear that within days, Fort Portal and Mityana will be affected and before long, other parts of Uganda will fall suit. By the close of business on September, 23rd, 2022, the Ministry of Health had released a statement showing that the cumulative confirmed rise in infections was in Mubende out of which five are from the same family and were never tested before burial.
I wonder how these five found their way to that list yet they were just suspected to have died due to Ebola. These are the questions that make us look like the Ebola outbreak announcement was premature, alarmist, and ill-intentioned, of course with a financial motive.
For a while, Uganda has been advised to set aside some money for research, especially into the outbreak and spread of tropical diseases but the government never listens, for their priorities are different. When we are faced with an Ebola-like threat, we resort to begging the western world to come to our rescue.
For how long are we going to depend on taxes paid by other nations to solve our domestic problems? Even the little money that is sent down for such purposes, it is diverted to none essential demands while the rest is wasted seminars, workshops and conferences.
In the final analysis, I want to remind our health experts that not every disease with Ebola-like symptoms must be declared an Ebola outbreak; it could be some other disease of a fresh strain of Ebola that cannot be cured with the available medicine.
Some efforts should have been made to establish the actual disease before pressing the panic button. It is reported that security officers, health officials, and civic leaders in Mubende district have already suspended mass gatherings such as entertainment facilities, weddings, and burials in an effort to break the chain of Ebola Virus Disease. It remains to be seen if these measures will curtail the movement of people and spread the disease to other parts of Uganda.